At IBC this year, Broadpeak announced deployments and demonstrated use cases of its video delivery technologies, illustrating their utility to operators and content providers alike. The categories included OTT, video quality, low latency, Android TV, CDN efficiency and local caching.
The demonstration of Broadpeak’s nanoCDN multicast (m)ABR solution for satellite took place in the Eutelsat booth, featuring a live feed of the operator’s CIRRUS hybrid satellite-OTT video delivery offering. Eutelsat designed the service as a cost-effective way for broadcasters to deliver high-quality content into more homes.
Known for combining multicast and ABR streaming, Broadpeak’s nanoCDN appeared in other contexts at IBC. In a demo involving nanoCDN-supported streams to an Apple TV, Broadpeak showcased high-quality UHD video with Dolby HDR. “What we wanted to express with our Dolby demo is that ABR formats are now synonymous with ultra-high quality on all screens, and not only meant for companion devices,” said Xavier Leclercq, Broadpeak,VP Business Development.
Low latency as applied to ABR is still a hot topic, and Broadpeak demonstrated several relevant new features for nanoCDN, including support for Common Media Application Format (CMAF) and Chunked Transfer Encoding (CTE). Broadpeak’s nanoCDN solution enables low latency in all formats, including Apple’s HLS.
Android TV is another strong trend. Broadpeak showed how its video delivery works within a range of pre-integrated Android TV ecosystems. That includes its nanoCDN mABR TV Input, which plugs into the Android TV Input Framework (TIF) on Technicolor STBs. Leclercq said that Android TV technology “will likely accelerate” deployments of nanoCDN and other Broadpeak solutions.
The deployment of cloud PVR with Orange in Poland, announced at IBC, occurred quickly (within eight months) in part because the Broadpeak BkS350 origin and packager server and BkM100 video delivery mediator had already been deployed with the platform partner, Viaccess-Orca (VO). But Leclercq said another reason was the simplified integration enabled by Android TV.
In another operator collaboration demoed at IBC, Broadpeak and Telstra introduced a new way to optimise video quality and efficiency over fixed and mobile networks. The joint solution combines Broadpeak’s umbrellaCDN/BkA100 analytics with Telstra’s intelligence in mobile sports apps and real-time network awareness. Leclercq explained that Broadpeak’s umbrellaCDN receives all the viewing requests, with information about device characteristics (supported codecs, network connections, ISP, etc.) Then it configures user groups to match device characteristics.
“When the umbrellaCDN receives a session request,” Leclercq said, “it analyses the information sent by the application and elects the best content format for the subscriber, with the objective of finding the best fit between the device’s capabilities and the network resources usage.”
Improving CDN efficiency is an ongoing effort. Three years ago, Broadpeak launched BroadCache Box, a caching and streaming server that gives content providers capabilities comparable to Netflix. At IBC, Broadpeak demonstrated how HBO Latin America was using BroadCache to reduce CDN costs and improve subscriber QoE.
Leclercq said the local video-caching concept has room to grow. Adapting it to the mobile edge, for instance, could lead to content providers buying rights to temporarily host applications in the operator cloud. “We see this as a first step toward network slicing,” he said. The standards around network slicing are still under development, but the time may soon come when media companies look to operators for such ways to guarantee delivery of their content.